Fire protection rate, not an area rate

Letters to the Editor (The Truro Daily News)
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The published report on Colchester County fire protection area rates calls for some clarification, specifically as it applies to the Village of Tatamagouche.
An area rate to provide funding for the Tatamagouche fire department was totally absent from the Village of Tatamagouche tax structure.
During the 1970s, village residents were looking forward to at least 20 years of a relatively high area tax rate required to pay down the debt on the newly constructed water utility. This charge to village property owners was generally designated as a fire protection rate with reference to fire hydrants.
It should be noted that the fire department firmly supported a policy which excluded an area tax rate levied specifically for the benefit of the department. Simultaneously, expressions of appreciation were heard from the department for the large measure of community support for the annual Labour Day fundraising event.
From the listing of fire protection rates reported (Truro Daily News, Feb. 12, 2008) it would appear that the Village of Tatamagouche was trying to get on the area rate band wagon with a rate of .0125 per $100 of assessed property value. Not so.
The payment to the Tatamagouche fire department was an annual honorarium in recognition of the generosity shown by the department for having relinquished its right to substantial funding through an annual fire protection rate, and certainly an expression of appreciation for the valued and varied services provided by this dedicated group of volunteer workers.
Unlike revenue from a tax rate levied against the assessed value of property, the honorarium was paid from the village commission general account with a built in inflation factor. This grant amounted to $2,921 by year 2007.
Raymond Ross
Former member of the
Tatamagouche Village Commission

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